In the 1999 NFC championship game the St. Louis Rams and Tampa Bay Buccaneers faced off in what was a memorable defensive battle. The game had a number of field goals, a safety and only one touchdown allowed within the closing minutes. The Rams went on to win their first Super Bowl that year and three seasons later the Bucs accomplished that feat. Fast forward to the present, the Bucs dominant defense is well into retirement and the St. Louis Rams are no longer the greatest show on turf.
These two teams are no longer in their glory days as the Buccaneers were on the verge of self-destruction just a few weeks ago and the Rams are a young inexperienced team on offense. Things have not been going according to plan and these two teams look like they are ready for the offseason so they can start planning for next year. Before they do that they have two games left on their schedule and this matchup can go long way in determining where they fall in the draft.
The St. Louis Rams are hoping the Washington Redskins continue to lose so that they can land somewhere within the top two picks via the Robert Griffin trade. They want to continue to build off last seasons run and finish the season with a .500 record. Failing to win any of the next two games will guarantee another losing season.
The Bucs have made significant strides since turning to Mike Glennon. He has passed for over 2,000 yards and thrown 17 touchdowns this season. Quite frankly Tampa Bay head coach Greg Schiano is hoping to ride his rookie quarterback into next season. His return as head coach next season did not seem likely after a 0-8 start this year.
The Rams have shown that they can hang with the best in the league, but they also play with the lowest too. They have played inconsistent all year and we never know who is going to show up on offense. The only constant the Rams have had is Zac Stacy. He is having a phenomenal rookie season considering he did not start playing until the 5th game of the season. He is currently 146 yards away from reaching 1,000 yards for the season.
If Stacy wants to reach that more this season, this is the defense he will need to take the most advantage of before next week. The Buccaneers have a respectable run defense that is ranked 15th in the league. Next weeks opponent, the Seattle Seahawks is ranked 10th, which will be a lot to handle especially with the game being played at CenturyLink Field.
The Rams are playing their last home game and will have a packed stadium on their side. Although the Buccaneers are playing better in the second half of the season, they are (1-2) in their last three games. The St. Louis Rams have a winning record at home and usually keep the games close if they are down. The Rams will leave the home crowd cheering as they finish the season at home with a win against the visiting Bucs.